Goo Lesson and Quicksand

Yuck! Look at that goo! At this lesson, we made homemade goo using corn starch and water!  Just mix the two of them together with some food coloring and we get tons of icky goo!  We used this lesson to demonstrate the properties of quicksand, a type of sand that is commonly found near riverbeds, lakes, and other watery habitats.  What is quicksand?? Wikipedia says:

Water circulation underground can focus in an area with the optimal mixture of fine sands and other materials such as clay. The water moves up and then down slowly in a convection-like manner throughout a column of sand, and the sand remains a generally solid mass. This lubricates the sand particles and renders them unable to support significant weight, since they move with little friction, behaving more like a liquid when exposed to stress. Since water does not usually go up to the surface of the sand, the sand on top appears solid, and can support leaves and other small debris, making quicksand difficult to distinguish from the surrounding environment.

Do you know how to get out of quicksand???  Well first, stop moving around and then try to lay down on the sand.  As you lay down, you will increase the surface area that your body is in contact with the sand.  Then, try to slowly crawl out.  Watch Bear Grylls get out of the sand!

For all who are interested, our lesson plans for this week are posted online at:

http://sciencedays.org/curriculum/lessons.html.

Cheers!

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